Steven A. Pepper

Partner

Fax: 404.873.8191
Atlanta
171 17th Street NW
Suite 2100
Atlanta, Georgia 30363

Biography

Steve is a partner in the Real Estate and Commercial Lending practices. He was a former member of the firm’s Executive Committee and former co-chair of the Diversity Committee.  He represents real estate developers and owners in the acquisition, financing and development of new multifamily projects and for the disposition of existing properties. With a reputation for providing sophisticated real estate counsel, Steve advises clients in acquisitions, development and financing of raw land, office buildings, residential subdivisions, condominiums, industrial properties and retail projects. Clients appreciate Steve’s direct approach and proven track record for negotiating, preparing and reviewing all types of loan documentation and complex multifamily development documentation and most importantly for closing deals in an efficient and pragmatic manner.

Local, regional and national lenders also hire Steve to structure and close commercial real estate term and construction loan transactions, corporate lending transactions, and asset based lending transactions. He also handles loan workouts and restructurings for these institutions. Steve has led due diligence teams, including in connection with single-lender acquisitions of several large loan portfolios. Steve regularly serves as special Georgia counsel on significant multi-state financings of all types. In these scenarios, he is engaged by lead counsel at major national law firms to provide advice on Georgia law, as well as opinion letters in connection with significant financings.

Experience

  • Representing local, regional, and national banks in construction loans for multi-family, condominium, retail, office/warehouse, and office projects.

  • Representing large South Carolina and Florida-based apartment management company in connection with management and receivership following Fannie Mae foreclosures. This included various work related to 12 or more properties in Georgia, Florida, North Carolina and Alabama in areas such as dealing with the former owners in connection with the misappropriation of rents, security deposits, laundry income and other revenue, negotiating with local governments over water and other unpaid utility charges, and general property management activities.

  • Representing of local, regional, and national banks in corporate, commercial, and asset-based loans.

  • Representing an institutional owner in the acquisition and disposition of “power center” retail developments, multi-family projects, office/warehouse projects and office developments.

  • Representing a Savannah, Georgia-based private college in connection with $130 million senior-secured credit facility secured by, among other collateral, 50 or more separate parcels of real estate.

  • Representing a large Atlanta-based skilled cared nursing home owner and operator in connection with $40 million senior secured credit facility, $40 million senior real estate secured credit facility, and Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)-sponsored credit facilities.

  • Representing a California-based healthcare real estate investment trust (REIT) in connection with $45 million senior secured real estate facility for financing of medical office buildings throughout the United States.

  • Representing seller of 12-property Atlanta multifamily portfolio containing 1,100 plus apartment units to Yakima, Washington-based multifamily company, including coordination of equity investment in purchaser by seller and mezzanine loan to seller.

  • Representing national bank in workouts and restructuring of numerous non-performing real estate loans, including the workout of defaulted loans to several single-family home developer affecting more than 1,000 homes and developed lots.

  • Represented developer/owner of mixed-use urban redevelopment project of over 80 acres in obtaining approximately $80 Million of NMTC- subsidized financing for multiple phases of the development, including approximately 900,000 square feet of office space. The transactions involved 11 different CDE lenders and acquisitions of participations in existing leverage loans to 11 different NMTC investment funds.

  • Represented national bank and non-bank lenders in due diligence aspects of loan acquisition transactions regarding more than 300 real estate and asset based loans.

  • Representing several Georgia-based apartment owners and manager in connection with the acquisition, disposition, and financing of more than 30,000 apartment units located in Georgia, Florida, Alabama, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Tennessee, Texas, Oklahoma, and Colorado. These units were mostly class B or C apartments that were renovated after purchase, thereby creating value for the ownership group. The financing included traditional bank acquisition and renovation financing, and mini-perm refinancing in the commercial mortgage backed securities (CMBS), Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae agency loans and insurance companies. Though many of the transactions were single development deals, there were several portfolio acquisitions and dispositions.

Credentials

  • University of Florida College of Law, Juris Doctor,
    with Honors
    • Senior Articles Editor—University of Florida Law Review
    • Trinity College at Cambridge University, Cambridge, England
    • Institute of State and Law, Polish Academy of Science, Warsaw, Poland
  • University of Florida, Bachelor of Arts,
    with Honors
  • State of Georgia 1981
  • State of Florida 1980
    • Anti-Defamation League
      • Chairman Emeritus, Southeast Region Board of Trustees
      • National Commissioner
      • National Civil Rights Committee, member

Recognition

  • Georgia Super Lawyers (Real Estate), 2006–19
  • Atlanta Best Lawyers Real Estate Law Lawyer of the Year, 2012
  • Best Lawyers in America (Real Estate Law), 2010–21
  • The International Who’s Who of Real Estate Lawyers, 2012–14
  • The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers, 2013–14
  • American Lawyer Media and Martindale-Hubbell™, Top Rated Lawyer in Banking & Finance Law, 2013
  • “Legal Elite,” Georgia Trend, 2007–08, 2019

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